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Knowing the parts and features of a wheelchair is important when you are a new wheelchair buyer or when you are replacing a wheelchair part. For a first time wheelchair buyer, it may seem confusing with its complex design. However, once you are familiar with the anatomy of a wheelchair, it is not as intimidating as it seems. Do you know all the parts of a wheelchair and its features? Test yourself by using the guide below.
Wheelchair Parts and Features
Full Length - Most common length. The length extends the full distance from the back of the seat frame to the front of the seat frame. It gives the user a larger area for gripping to support themselves during transfers.
Desk Length - Long enough to support the users elbows when seated and are about 4" shorter in length than full length arms. It allows user to get closer to a desk or table. The armrest does not bump into the desk as soon as full length arms would.
Mag Wheel - Made out of molded wheels that are heavy and durable. They cannot be replaced of fixed.
Spoke Wheel - Spoke wheel has a similar appearance as bicycle wheels. They are lightweight.
Brake - The brakes are located on the large rear wheels and they are typically located on the front of the wheel next to the bottom of the seat. It allows the wheels to be locked in place to prevent the wheelchair from moving.
Caster Wheel - They are located in front of the rear wheels and are much smaller in size. They are typically 8 inches in diameter.
Fork - The component that connects the caster to the frame. There are two kinds of fork: Standard fork and Frog leg forks
Standard Fork - Comes as a standard feature for most manual wheelchairs
Footrest - The footrests can be adjusted to accommodate different lengths. There are two kinds of footrest: Swing-Away Footrest and Fixed Footrest
Swing-Away Footrest - It can be rotated out of the way during transfers without having to remove from the wheelchair.
Fixed Footrest - It is permanently attached to the wheelchair and it cannot be rotated.
Frame - The frame is the rigid and tubular structure that supports the seat and the wheels.
Backseat - The fixed area where the user's back is rest on.